Life Lessons from Plants
I wanted to bring us outside for this post because Nature has so much that she can teach us.
Many of us are waiting for what comes next after COVID-19. Waiting is hard. Most of us are not comfortable with uncertainty and not knowing what comes next. Things can feel really scary right now as we worry about our health, our finances, the economy and the future. We can turn to nature and plants to find some understanding and comfort.
I have been spending time outside during this time at home. I decided to try my hand at growing plants from seed. Learning life lessons from plants was not on my agenda. My hope was to plant a food, herb and flower garden. Becoming a producer of food is something I felt called to do. I knew without a doubt I had a lot of learning to do. I didn’t realize that a big part of what I would learn wasn’t about the actual gardening.
Planting the seeds
I planted the seeds about 3 to 3 1/2 weeks ago. Most of the packages listed the average germination time as 7-10 days although some listed that time as up to two weeks. I continued to take care of them, watering them every day and protecting them from cold.
I am very good at growing flowers and herbs. Success growing vegetables has eluded me, so this felt intimidating. But I really wanted to have some vegetables so I wanted to try.
There was no evidence that anything was happening. Not even one green sprout in all of the seeds I planted. For 3 to 3 1/2 weeks I cared for these seeds without any certainty they would actually grow. There were times I wondered if I should throw all the tiny pots in the compost and go buy plants. I asked my facebook friends for help.
A little patience
My friend Cathy told me it was a bit too soon to plant in Idaho. But she also said that I hadn’t given the seeds enough time.
Like many of you, I don’t really like being patient. It’s hard to wonder if I might fail at something and to see evidence of my attempt at something new every time I went outside. Every time I let out the dogs, I saw the dirt filled tiny pots with no plant. More than once I considered giving up.
Tiny green sprouts appeared in one of my pots – finally – after 3 1/2 weeks! Shortly after, the other pots began to show growth. In fact, even my little “nursery” is showing growth and the plants are growing.
Once the plants broke the surface of the soil, the tiny seedlings began to show significant growth quickly. All that time I waited for them to grow, I couldn’t see the progress. Their growth was all beneath the surface where it wasn’t visible. The roots were getting established before the plant would sent the leaves up through the soil.
Plants as a metaphor
Our lives are like this, too. Sometimes there are things we are working toward. We plant the seeds of a new dream or a new project. Then we wait. It feels like nothing is happening. We can’t see the progress. There is no evidence of change. We start to feel anxious and afraid. We begin to wonder if we are on the right track. We can use these life lessons from plants as a metaphor to encourage us continue to put effort and energy into things even when we can’t see results.
If we keep at it, continue to nurture, and take care of the things you cannot see… we WILL eventually see growth and progress in our dreams and progress. What is it in your life that you can apply this to? What can you continue to nourish and have faith in that you cannot see?
Let’s nourish the gardens of our lives having faith that the gardens of our lives WILL germinate. Have faith. Continue to focus loving energy on things you love. Choose love over fear daily. Especially now when there is so much fear around, choose love. All you need is a willingness to see love to create a shift. Will you try?
I choose to see love in this. I choose to see love in you.